Summary and Info
The editors and authors have opened my eyes to many British films of the 1950s that sound perfectly fascinating and which I have never seen. Corin Redgrave delivers a paper on his father's film work which makes one yearn to see more of Michael Redgrave's films. There's a splendid article on B-movie production in the 1950s that focusses in on "Tympean Films," and shows that B-movies can sometimes embody more of social reality than the A pictures because they do so more or less by accident. Robert Giddings reads the Dirk Bogarde version of A TALE OF TWO CITIES in light of the Cold War, and Dirk figures heavily in Alison Platt's piquant essay, "Boys, Ballet, and Begonias: The SPANISH GARDENER and its analogues." Sarah Kasen gives a straightforward account of the place of film in the Festival of Britain, and Tony Aldgate shows the places in which the gay-themed SERIOUS CHARGE had trouble making it to the screen with all its bits intact. One stupid note spoils the whole: The timeline appended to the volume shows that the only event in UK literature worth recording in 1955 was the publication of F.R. Leavis' "DH LAWRENCE, NOVELIST." i don't think so! This bizarre anomaly is explained by the fact that one of the editors (Ian Mackillop) is the world's #1 Leavis expert and it is he who is charged with the uphill task of resuscitating Leavis' thoroughly torpid reputation.
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